In his 20s and early 30s, von Braun was the central figure in Germany's rocket development program, responsible for the design and realization of the V-2 combat rocket during World War II. After the war, he and some select members of his rocket team were taken to the United States as part of the then-secret Operation Paperclip ... he served as director of the newly formed Marshall Space Flight Center and as the chief architect of the Saturn V launch vehicle, the superbooster that propelled the Apollo spacecraft to the Moon. According to one NASA source, he is "without doubt, the greatest rocket scientist in history". His crowning achievement was to lead the development of the Saturn V booster rocket that helped land the first men on the Moon in July 1969.- Wernher von Braun on Wikipedia
In his autobiography "Carrying the Fire: An Astronaut's Journeys," Collins wrote about that isolation with surprising enthusiasm:
"I feel this powerfully -- not as fear or loneliness -- but as awareness, anticipation, satisfaction, confidence, almost exultation. I like the feeling. Outside my window I can see stars -- and that is all. Where I know the moon to be, there is simply a black void, the moon's presence is defined solely by the absence of stars."
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